Paystack: Meet The Young Nigerians Who Sold Their Company For Over $200 Million

Stripe’s acquisition of Paystack is “the biggest startup acquisition to date to come out of Nigeria, as well as Stripe’s biggest acquisition to date anywhere.”

– Techcrunch.

Paystack co-founders Shola Akinlade and Ezra Olubi.

Paystack is a Nigerian startup company that facilitates online payments and transactions. The journey of Paystack began when Ezra and Shola met in the university and decided to work on their dream.

Fast forward to Today, Stripe, the American e-payment services company, has now acquired the startup for over $200 million.

Background History

paystack shola akinlade ezra olubi

“I grew up in Lagos. Started writing software around 2002, 2003. That’s when I met Ezra. We went to school together…Babcock University. Sometime in 2015, I figured out I could charge a card from my computer. I thought it was cool,”
“I showed OO Nwoye, and he was like ‘yo, guy. This is a company. This is Stripe.’

– Shola.

The duo then modelled their startup after Stripe.

“We became the first Nigerian company to get into YC (Y Combinator is an American seed money startup accelerator launched in March 2005. It has been used to launch over 2,000 companies, including Stripe) in 2016.
“Our story was very simple. The only way we could describe Paystack was ‘it’s like Stripe for Africa.’

The Vision For Africa

paystack shola akinlade ezra olubi

“Paystack was not for sale when Stripe approached us,”

However, the two CEOs saw this as a path to accelerate their mission.

“For us, it’s about the mission. I’m driven by the mission to accelerate payments on the continent, and I am convinced that Stripe will help us get there faster. It is a very natural move,”

Now acquired by Stripe, Paystack can now power the growth of businesses in Africa through secure payment processes.

An Inspiration to Young entrepreneurs

paystack shola akinlade ezra olubi

Are you dancing in puddles or grinding from a noisy dormitory? Keep the goal in view, and don’t stop pursuing your dreams.

“If one of the most sophisticated companies in Silicon Valley can acquire a company from our ecosystem, like, that is just going to unlock a lot of opportunities. This is going to tell people that you can make things and it can work. You can build your dreams, and you can get it done.”

These two young, Nigerian tech CEOs’ story is an inspiration to other young entrepreneurs across Africa and other parts of the world.

This is also proof that the African youth have immense talent and there is so much we can achieve if only we are allowed to thrive!






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